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Natura has issued a voluntary recall of 5 lots of dry cat food and dry ferret food due to vitamin insufficiency.  The official FDA report and list of specific products  is below.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – November 24, 2014 – Fremont, Nebraska – Natura Pet Products has initiated a limited, voluntary recall of certain dry cat and dry ferret food lots produced in its Fremont, Nebraska facility. Due to a formulation error, these products contain insufficient levels of vitamins and excess minerals.

Pets can become ill if they lack vitamins for prolonged periods. Early signs of vitamin deficiency may include decreased appetite, lethargy, vomiting and weight loss. If treated promptly, vitamin deficiency can be successfully reversed. The presence of excess minerals in these products poses no health concern.

There have been no reports of animal health concerns to date, but these lots do not meet our quality standards and should not be consumed by pets. No other EVO® products or lots are affected by this issue.

The affected product and lot codes are:

PRODUCT SIZE UPC EXP DATE LOT CODE
EVO® Grain Free Turkey & Chicken Formula dry cat & kitten food 15.4 LB 5148 541400 02/19/2016 4300A700D2
EVO® Grain Free Turkey & Chicken Formula dry cat & kitten food 2.2 LB 5148 541402 02/20/2016 4301A700A4
EVO® Grain Free Turkey & Chicken Formula dry cat & kitten food 2.2 LB 5148 541402 02/20/2016 4301A700B4
EVO® Grain Free Turkey & Chicken Formula dry cat & kitten food 2.2 LB 5148 541402 02/20/2016 4301A700C4
EVO® Grain Free Ferret Food 6.6 LB 5148 542101 02/19/2016 4300A700D3

The problem was discovered during the investigation of an ingredient inventory discrepancy. Only these 5 lots are affected. These lots were distributed through independent retailers in CA, GA, MI, MN, NV, PA, TX, VT and Canada, as well as online. No other Natura products are affected.

Retailers have been contacted and are instructed to immediately withdraw these lots from store shelves. Consumers who purchased the product should discontinue feeding the product immediately and discard as normal household waste. We apologize for the inconvenience caused by this incident. We are taking immediate corrective action as a result of our investigation.

For more information, consumers can reach Natura Consumer Relations at 1-855-206-8297, Monday through Friday 9:00 AM to 6:00 PM EST or visit www.evopet.com.

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Hiring Social Media Consultants

by Ryan on November 17, 2014

in PetsitUSA News

If you are interested in a free year of membership to PetsitUSA, then you can become a new social media consultant!  There are varying options on what a pet sitter should contribute.  You could write blog posts about pet sitting or focus on Facebook and Twitter messages.  If you are interested, send an email to petsitUSA@gmail.com!

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A new way to for pet sitters to communicate with pet owners is PocketSuite.  It will soon be available in the listings of PetsitUSA members.  The official description for the new app is below:

PocketSuite is the first mobile business management tool for pet sitters, walkers and trainers. PocketSuite gives today’s on-the-go professionals the power to schedule appointments, communicate with clients and accept payment, all from a single app. PocketSuite is the fastest, most convenient and most affordable way for pet professionals to run their business.

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We all know that dogs are great friends. They bring a smile to our face after a long day’s work or when we are feeling low. Dogs are also the most preferred when it comes to choosing a service animal.

Choosing a dog is a challenge for most people as animals, like humans, have different personalities. Choosing a dog for a person with a disability or an illness is an even greater challenge. While most people know of service dogs that help people who are blind or deaf go about their daily activities with ease, few are aware of service dogs that can be life savers for those suffering from seizures.

If you are planning to get a seizure alert/response dog for a loved one, here’s what you need to know.

What is a Seizure Alert Dog?

A seizure alert dog has the ability to sense a seizure before it occurs and warn the affected person before he/she experiences it. These dogs can sense an impending seizure minutes or hours before the person shows any clinical signs of being affected with a seizure.

There is no specific answer yet as to how dogs sense seizures. Some people think that as dogs are adept at reading body language, they may be able to detect minor changes in a person’s behavior or body language that may occur before the seizure.

Other people assume that dogs may be able to detect subtle changes in body odor before a seizure. While there is no scientific proof, several people claim that their dogs display seizure alerting behavior thus giving them time to sit or lie down and preventing them from fatal injuries. Dogs who display seizure alerting behavior well in advance enable people to take medications or even call for help before the seizure occurs.

Dogs have been known to display a wide range of behaviors that can be considered as seizure alerting behaviors. Barking at the owner’s face or emitting a warning bark, pacing restlessly, licking the owner’s hands, are all considered to be seizure alerting behaviors.

Whether dogs truly can or cannot detect seizures, the fact remains that dogs cannot be trained to detect such things. However, if a dog displays such an exceptional trait, owners need to identify it and encourage it.

What is a Seizure Response Dog?

A seizure response dog may or may not be able to detect seizures before they occur. However, these dogs are able to help the person affected by a seizure in many ways. Unlike seizure alert dogs, seizure response dogs can be trained to help a person when the need arises.

A seizure response dog can help in various ways such as:

  • Retrieving medicines or a phone
  • Rolling over a person during a seizure so that he can breathe
  • Clearing the affected person’s mouth of vomit
  • Getting help by barking, by operating a pre-programmed phone, or by activating a medical alert
  • Pulling away objects that may be potentially dangerous to the person
  • Attempting to get the person into a conscious state and acting as a brace to help the person get up on his feet
  • Stopping the person from banging into objects or falling down the stairs during the postictal stage
  • Providing emotional and physical support
  • Carrying important information about the person’s health and emergency measures to be taken

A seizure response dog can be taught to stay with the affected person throughout seizures. Once a seizure ends, a person may feel disoriented. In such times, the presence of a dog can have a calming effect on the person’s mind. Furthermore, people who are affected by seizures in public settings may feel embarrassed when they recover. Having a dog by the side can help in diverting other people’s attention to the dog’s qualities.

What Breeds Are Seizure Dogs?

Golden retrievers, Samoyed crosses, German shepherds, setter mixes and many other breeds and mixes can predict, alert, or help individuals with seizure disorders. Instead of belonging to a particular breed, it is more important for a dog to be people-oriented and responsive to human feelings and emotions.

All service dogs need to be friendly and be able to stay calm in public places. Dogs that can get aggressive or over-protective of the owner, and those that are shy or nervous won’t be able to do well to help the affected individual when the need arises.

How Can One Get a Seizure Assistance Dog?

The field of training dogs specifically to act as seizure response dogs is relatively new. However, you can get in touch with service dog training programs to see if they have a dog to suit your requirements or if they can train a dog for you. You can also get in touch with personal trainers and ask if they can train a dog to be a seizure response dog. Be wary of fraudulent organizations or fraudsters who make false claims.

If the affected person already has a dog, it can be trained to become a seizure response dog. The dog’s favorite toys or treats can be used to train it. If the dog loves new toys and takes well to new treats, you can try some freebies to see what works.

Having the affected individual play their dog’s favorite game after recovering from a seizure will help the dog identify the seizure phase. Remember to be patient with the dog and don’t forget to give it lots of treats when you see the desired behavior.

Conclusion

Studies show that with low stress levels, the chances of a seizure are minimal. And what better way to bring down stress levels than by having a furry friend by your side?

Author Bio

Korie Cantor has been working as a freelance writer for a long time. She has a diverse background in dog’s health and fitness. She loves sharing her opinions on the latest issues affecting dogs.

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Miracle Dogs: Rescue Stories

by Ryan on October 11, 2014

in Dogs, Pets

A great book about rescue dogs was released this week.  PetsitUSA was fortunate to receive an advanced copy of Miracle Dogs: Rescue Stories by Liz Stavrinides.  There are many stories of how amazing rescue dogs can be for pet owners and even other pets.  The book starts out strong by telling how a rescue dog changed the lives of an autistic boy and his family.  The inspirational stories continue, including how a rescue dog can help someone recover from the loss of a loved one.  Each story is accompanied by photos taken personally by the author.  An official description is below.  You can purchase the book here.

Miracle Dogs celebrates and honors the rescuers and the dogs whose lives they’ve saved. It features wonderful stories and photographs of dog rescuers, dog trainers, and rescue organizations such as The Gentle Barn and Tamar Geller’s Operation Heroes and Hounds, along with celebrity pet owners such as Chevy Chase, Hoda Kotb, Bob Einstein, Amanda Hearst, Jamie Lynn Siegler, and Lance Bass. Each story includes portraits of the dog and its new family, followed by a concise, compelling narrative detailing the dog’s journey to its new home.

A professional pet photographer, Liz Stavrinides spends much of her time on projects  related to animal rescue. Miracle Dogs was born out of her desire to collect and share the stories of the dogs she’s met over the years, showcasing the incredible bravery and compassion of both canines and owners.

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The latest recall is Simply Nourish Biscotti with Beef & Sweet Potatoes Dog Treats.  Only the  product with a specific expiration date is being recalled.  It was first reported by truthaboutpetfood.com.  An official press release can be found at PetSmart’s website.  It is listed below:


Loving Pets Corporation has announced a voluntary recall of the following expiration date of Simply Nourish Biscotti with Beef & Sweet Potatoes Dog Treats due to the potential of mold growth. No other Simply Nourish or Loving Pets treats are affected.

Product Description: Simply Nourish Biscotti with Beef & Sweet Potatoes Dog Treats
SKU: 5203800

UPC: 73725747061

Expiration Date: 02/16

It is recommended that you immediately stop using the specified product and return it to any PetSmart store for a full refund. To receive a full refund, please bring your receipt or a copy of this email to your local PetSmart store. Our store associates can help you find a replacement. If you have any personal or pet health concerns please contact your health care provider or veterinarian. For any additional questions related to this Product Recall please call the Loving Pets Corporation at 1-866-599-7387.

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Here is the latest pet food recall due to the risk of salmonella.  The full FDA report is below.

Bravo Recalls Select Chicken and Turkey Pet Foods Because of Possible Salmonella Health Risk

Contact
Consumer:
866-922-9222

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – September 26, 2014 – (Manchester, CT) Bravo of Manchester, CT is recalling select lots of Bravo Turkey and Chicken pet foods for dogs and cats because they have the potential to be contaminated with Salmonella. Salmonella can affect animals eating the products and there is risk to humans from handling contaminated pet products, especially if they have not thoroughly washed their hands after having contact with the products or any surfaces exposed to these products.

Healthy people infected with Salmonella should monitor themselves for some or all of the following symptoms: nausea, vomiting, diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, abdominal cramping and fever. Salmonella can result in more serious ailments, including arterial infections, endocarditis, arthritis, muscle pain, eye irritation, and urinary tract symptoms. Consumers exhibiting these signs after having contact with this product should contact their healthcare providers.

Pets with Salmonella infections may be lethargic and have diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, fever, and vomiting. Some pets will have only decreased appetite, fever and abdominal pain. Infected but otherwise healthy pets can be carriers and infect other animals or humans. If your pet has consumed the recalled product and has these symptoms, please contact your veterinarian.

The recalled product was distributed nationwide beginning on November 14, 2013 to distributors, retail stores, internet retailers and directly to consumers. The product can be identified by the batch ID code (best used by date) printed on the side of the plastic tube.

1) These products are being recalled because they have the potential to be contaminated with Salmonella.

RAW FOOD DIET BRAVO! TURKEY BLEND FOR DOGS AND CATS
Product Number: 31-102
Size: 2 lb. (32 OZ) plastic tubes
Best used by date: 11-05-15
UPC: 829546311025
Keep Frozen

Bravo! Blends All Natural Chicken Blend diet for dogs & cats
Product Number: 21-102
Size: 2 lb. (32 OZ) plastic tubes
Best used by date: 08-11-16
UPC: 829546211028
Keep Frozen

2) These products are being recalled out of an abundance of caution because they were manufactured in the same manufacturing facility or on the same day as products that tested positive.

Premium Turkey Formula BRAVO Balance RAW DIET
Product Number: 31-405
Size: 5 lb. (80 OZ) 2.3KG plastic tubes
Best used by date: 11-05-15
UPC: 829546314057
Keep Frozen

Bravo! Blends All Natural Chicken Blend diet for dogs & cats
Product Number: 21-105
Size: 5 lb. (80 OZ) 2.3KG plastic tubes
Best used by date: 08-11-16
UPC: 829546211059
Keep Frozen

The recall was initiated after routine testing by the Nebraska Department of Agriculture revealed the presence of Salmonella in two lots of product. This batch tested negative by a third party independent laboratory prior to release for distribution to consumers.

No additional products affected by this recall. The company has received no reports of illness in either people or animals associated with these products to date.

In addition to the voluntary recall of the above products, Bravo has chosen to voluntarily withdraw the following poultry products from the marketplace to provide its customers with the certainty of safety. Those products include all sizes (2 lb., 5 lb. and 10 lb.) of Bravo Chicken Blend(s), Bravo Turkey Blend(s), Bravo Balance Chicken Balance and Bravo Balance Premium Turkey Formula frozen raw diet products with best used by dates between June 20, 2016 and September 18, 2016. This is being done out of an abundance of caution despite no evidence of any manufacturing defect or distribution problem. None of these products are known to have tested positive for the presence of pathogens. This market withdrawal has NOT been requested by the FDA, but is being done voluntarily by Bravo.

The recalled product should not be sold or fed to pets. Pet owners who have the affected product at home should dispose of this product in a safe manner (example, a securely covered trash receptacle). Customers who have purchased the recalled pet food can return to the store where purchased and submit the Product Recall Claim Form available on the Bravo website www.bravopetfoods.comdisclaimer icon for a full refund or store credit. More information on the Bravo recall can also be found at www.bravopetfoods.comdisclaimer icon, or call toll free (866) 922-9222 Monday through Friday 9:00 am to 5:00 pm (EST).

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Here’s some official information on the free online conference starting September 22!

Ready to take your business to the next level?

PetSitUSA is a proud sponsor at the upcoming Prosperous Pet Business Online Conference  hosted by Kristin Morrison.

Speaking at the conference will be top experts in pet business, including Patti Moran, Andrea Arden from Animal Planet, Ian Dunbar and many more top pet business experts!

The goal of the conference is to inspire pet business owners to break through problems, get unstuck, and move forward on business goals. In short, to empower you to fulfill your dream of working with dogs for a living.

This conference has a unique format. It’s free (woo-hoo!), international (cool!), and comprised of a series of fun, short interviews with all sorts of personalities and experts in the dog field. You’re sure to take a gem away from each of these informal chats, each one built around the themes of making more money while experiencing more ease and more freedom (nice!).

All the details you need are here: Prosperous Pet Business Online Conference.

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